August 18, 2017
I had mentioned in my last post that Sarah was out of town on a little adventure this past week. Here’s the story.
A few weeks ago, we got a call from Aunt Yvonne, who is Steve’s mom’s sister.
Aunt Yvonne lives in California and loves to travel. She was making plans to go to Montreat, NC for a Roads Scholar workshop on C.S. Lewis and Steve’s mom happened to mention that Sarah loves Lewis. Aunt Yvonne generously offered to have Sarah come along as her guest. Sarah was, of course, delighted to be invited on such a scholarly adventure with such a delightful companion.
Since Sarah wasn’t comfortable driving the eight hours to Montreat by her herself, Steve volunteered to serve as her chauffeur and the two of them left town right after church on Sunday. Steve dropped her off at the conference center and then headed back to Charlotte (two hours away) to spend a couple of days with his parents. He picked Sarah back up yesterday morning and they arrived home last night, weary but happy.
Sarah took these photos with her phone except for the one showing the lobby of the conference center which is from the Montreat Conference Center website. Such a beautiful place!
If you are wondering what a C.S. Lewis workshop covers, here are some highlights.
Sarah enjoyed learning more about one of her favorite authors and even ordered one of Lewis’ books, Surprised by Joy, for her birthday. (She has already read ten of his other books.)
When Sarah was 13, she was asked to write something for a Jeff Gordon Children’s Foundation calendar and in that writing, she had mentioned C.S. Lewis. Yvonne happened across that old calendar when she was visiting Ken and Vernie before the retreat and she took it with her to Montreat.
On the last night Sarah was there, Sarah was asked to read what she had written about Lewis all those years ago. As it turns out, one of the couples there had lost a grandchild to Neuroblastoma at the age of 4 so they were especially touched by Sarah’s contribution.
Jus about everyone else at the workshop was north of sixty-five years old which was just fine with Sarah since she has always been quite content in the company of older people. And I’m sure that seeing her bright, lovely face was a treat for the other attendees.
During free time one afternoon, Aunt Yvonne treated Sarah to a tour of the Biltmore House, which just happens to be where Steve and I went on our honeymoon.
Don’t you know Sarah’s heart went pitter-patter at the sight of all of these books?
The week was wonderful for her and we are grateful to Aunt Yvonne for her generosity and thoughtfulness in making the experience available to Sarah.
Tonight we will have a celebration of Sarah’s upcoming birthday. (August 23) She has requested pizza, chocolate éclair torte and a family movie night so that’s what we will do.
Sunday, right after church, she will head back to Regent University. Steve and I will follow a couple of hours later to meet her new roommates and help her get settled in.
In the midst of the other happenings of life, her car has to have a $225 brake job done this morning; the brakes started making some pretty bad noises the last few miles of their trip yesterday. Thankfully, they didn’t break down on the way home.
This afternoon (in the midst of packing for college) she will be interviewed by Duke Children’s Hospital for an article to be included in the fall issue of their magazine. (I’ll be interviewed for the article on Monday.) We are always honored to get to share Sarah’s story.
Before I close, I wanted to mention that Steve was able to meet with a couple of old friends while he was in Charlotte.
This is Warren “Wardog” Henderson.
He and Steve went to High School together in Clovis, NM. Both of hteir dads were fighter pilots and their families hung out together and went snow skiing together. Back in high school, Warren was planning to go into the ministry and Steve was planning to join the Air Force.
Interesting how plans can change! Steve ended up going into the ministry and Warren ended up going into the Air Force. (He says that Steve is the one who suggested he apply.) Warren is a retired Colonel who was the wing commander of the famous Flying Tigers. (Warren was also at the Pentagon on 9-11.)
While in Charlotte, Steve also got to see Ken Carpenter. (on the far right.)
Ken was the founder and leader of The Plaids, a Charlote-based show and dance band that was in existence for fifty years. Steve played bass in the band for several years and learned a lot from Ken. The two of them spent four hours together this past week, going out to eat, playing some music together, and reminiscing and talking about the ups and downs of their lives.
Steve had given Ken a small New Testament 35 years ago and Ken showed it to him during the visit; he said it goes with him everywhere.
Even though they hadn’t seen each in over three decades,, Steve said that within five minutes, they had picked up their friendshp like they had never been apart.
You just never can tell who will influence you over the years of your life–it could be a great-aunt, C.S. Lewis, a high school classmate or a fellow musician.
And conversely, you never know whose life you will influence, sometimes without even knowing you have done so.
What about you? Is there someone who had a big influence on your life? Maybe it was someone you never met (like a writer) or someone you know well. We would love to hear that story of influence.
Thrift stores, fuzzy socks
and conversing with my Yorkie
are all on the list of things I love.